Skip to main content

Antihero Vs Hero

By 20 marca 2020No Comments

I've been thinking lately, what exactly is an antihero? Online sources tell me that an antihero is essentially a protagonist who does not have some hero-like qualities. I thought to myself, "way to use a part of the definition in the answer." So I set out, like a good researcher, to find out the definition of hero.

I was in luck, I was able to find the definition of a hero. Essentially, a hero is more than just the protagonist. A hero is classically of noble blood or is a demigod (The word hero comes from the Greeks.). This person is usually courageous, charismatic, an adept fighter (also known as athletic), righteous, and gentleman-like. In other words, a hero has all the good qualities that are valued by the society the hero finds himself / herself. Oh, I almost forgot to mention, the hero gets the girl too!

Now we know the definition of hero, we can deduce the meaning of the antihero. As I said before, an antihero is essentially a protagonist who does not have hero-like qualities. With the new information we have acquired, it is safe to say that an antihero is the protagonist who does not have any one or combination of the following qualities: courage, charisma, athleticism, righteousness, and gentleness.

Okay, so what now? What does this mean? This means that unlike the hero, the antihero is imperfect. The antihero is flawed in the sense that the antihero does not have all the skills desired for the occupation. It's like a manager who cannot lead a team or write a report. It's not that the hero is less of a person than the antihero, though it often perceived that way. Think Superman and Batman. Superman is the hero and Batman is the antihero. It's not like Superman is incapable of feeling, it's that Batman has a more neurotic tendency than Superman. It's that the antihero has good intentions for the betterment of society, but is ill-equipped to execute them in the way that the hero would. Think Catwoman on this. She wants to preserve large cats, but the way she goes about it, is not what one would call moral. This is more commonly referred to as doing the wrong thing for the right reason. The results from these attempts at good deeds do not go well over the public. The public might not understand the intentions of the antihero (they are not in the antihero's mind, so all the public can perceive is the action executed) and consider the antihero a villain. Some might realize the intentions of the antihero and say that the antihero is good. All in all, the antihero is more likely to have mixed reviews about performance than the hero by those who are in a direct effect of the actions of the form of hero.

I wrote this because I found that many of the English majors at school have such a fuzzy concept of the antihero while knowing many specifics of other writing components, that I surmised that there must be others who are just as confused as I, if not, even more so. I hope this helps understanding these two forms of heroes.

[ff id=”2″]